“I am the vine, and you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5
Our Capital Campaign, “Hope Rising: Embracing Our Future at Fremont” is underway. In the next several weeks, you can expect more detailed information about the plans we have to improve the shape of our space for future mission. But, first, we are being invited to pray. The prayer we are being asked to pray throughout the Campaign is, “Lord, what do you want to do through me?”
I don’t know about you, but my first impulse is always to go straight to the bottom line: give me the facts, the practical stuff. What are we doing? How much will it cost? How much money am I willing to give to support it? But, the prayer we are being asked to pray, doesn’t start there. The prayer seems to beckon us to slow WAY down and invite God’s spirit to take us deeper: “Lord, what do you want to do through me?”
Honestly, the more I pray this prayer the more I love it. This beautiful prayer invokes both humility and empowerment in me. First, the prayer prompts humility. When I pray, “Lord, what do you want to do through me?” I am acknowledging that there are things that are mine to do, and things that are NOT mine to do. As a pastor, I can often feel like everything is mine to do (cue the martyr music). Like Atlas in Greek mythology, I am tempted to feel like I must hoist “the world” upon my shoulders and carry it forward. This extraordinary prayer hits “pause” on that impulse of mine. Instead, I am called to seek God’s wisdom in order to understand what is mine (no more, no less) to do. I don’t have to do it all, I simply have to do my part. What a relief!
Second, the prayer invites empowerment. What I love about this prayer is that it also suggests that there are things that God can only do through me. I am uniquely gifted. I am uniquely called. There are things about our shared ministry that I (Erin!) am really good at doing, and there are things that are definitely not my strong suit. The prayer, again, invites me to seek God’s spirit about what I can offer because of who I am. The same is true for each of you. This amazing Capital Campaign at Fremont is not primarily about money or our building. It is about US at Fremont. It is about leadership. It is about collective good. It is about future vision. What can we do (because of who you are)? What will we do (because we want to)? How is God calling each of us to lead?
I was so moved by the energy coming out of our Joyful Noise worship service last Sunday. What passion you all have regarding Creation Care! I pray that we do all the things that you suggested and more, but I also ask you to step forward and continue to offer your leadership so that together God’s vision for us at Fremont will be realized in us. In the meantime, may each of us continue to pray, listen, and then respond, “Lord, what do you want to do through me?”
Grace and peace,